World of Whirlpool Winner

Interior Architecture Award, Honor Award

The intent was to establish an international design center in Chicago for the Benton Harbor based Whirlpool Corporation, a company that had transformed itself over the last ten years into an international company.

The program was divided into three major components: 1) Presentation Area with 11 demonstration kitchens and laundries, 2) Formal Meeting Rooms with a large pre-function lounge, and 3) Back of House areas including a commercial kitchen, “dirty” lab and other support spaces.

The parti arranged the Presentation Area at the perimeter of the space with views over the surrounding decks to the city beyond, the center of this square donut contained all the Back of House areas. The Formal Meetings and Pre-Function Rooms are in the historic clock tower along the south edge of the square donut.

A white surface rises out of the floor and bends over the ceiling visually unifying the space into a whole. The appliances in the kitchens and laundries are all functional, but the environments are abstracted and are purposely not “real.” The interiors are intentionally ambiguous, they are at once practical and idealized.

Valerio Dewalt Train Associates
General contractor
Chicago, Illinois